National Emergency Medical Services (EMS) Week will be celebrated this year from May 18 through May 24. This marks the fortieth annual celebration of local Emergency Medical Services employees and volunteers. The theme for the week, chosen by the American College of Emergency Physicians, is “Dedicated. For Life.”
Emergency Medical Services staff include first responders, emergency medical technicians or paramedics, with a progressively increasing level of training and experience required at each level.
Most EMS staff in Kittitas County are unpaid first responders or emergency medical technicians who volunteer for Basic Life Support organizations. However, one Advanced Life Support organization is available for 24/7 response in Upper Kittitas County, Upper Kittitas County Medic One. Advanced Life Support organizations always have at least one paramedic ready to respond to life-threatening emergencies. Paramedics have the highest level of training among emergency responders and are able to perform advanced tasks like intubating a patient to open an airway.
Upper Kittitas County Medic One, which provides Advance Life Support ambulance service to Upper Kittitas County, has 20 career professionals who respond to emergency medical calls. Their staff roster includes eight paramedics and 12 emergency medical technicians. These 20 individuals respond from two stations in Upper Kittitas County using two primary ambulances, with one reserve ambulance.
The response provided by emergency medical services is critical to the survival of patients who experience a medical emergency. Please join us in using National EMS Week as an opportunity to thank the volunteer and career first responders of Kittitas County.